Polk’s Nature Discovery Center sits on one of Polk County’s treasured Environmental Areas, Circle B Bar Reserve. The center not only offers outdoor educational opportunities, but chances to learn about our surrounding local environment in an indoor setting. We encourage you to stop in for an educational experience before you hit the trails, which will have you coming back for more.
The Splash Pad at Trailhead Park is a new amenity for families to enjoy together. The Splash Pad is open year round from 10am – 7pm. There are two first-come first-serve shaded picnic tables areas and an on-site bathroom. There is also a playground at the park. Splash Pad is FREE.
Gandy Pool features a 10 lane, 25-yard short course heated pool with one-meter diving board and a 3-4 foot deep recreation pool. A handicap ramp at 0-depth and a hydraulic handicap lift chair is provided.
Open year round, hours vary by season, visit the website for more information.
Cost: $4 per person/visit OR 20 visit pass for $40. Semi-Annual or Annual Activity Pass also available.
Simpson Pool is open seasonally in the Summer (late Spring through early Fall). Simpson Pool features a 10 lane, 50 meter long course pool and separate diving well with two one-meter diving boards. A hydraulic handicap lift chair is also available.
Located at Simpson Park Community Center, where you’ll find a gym, tennis courts, playground, and a variety of classes for kids and adults.
Cost: $4 per person/visit OR 20 visit pass for $40. Semi-Annual or Annual Activity Pass also available. 17 & under – inquire about dollar days.
The Rowdy Gaines Olympic Pool is an Olympic size competitive pool used for competitive swimming, swim instruction and recreational use. Heated and open to the public year-round for lap swim and open swim.
Cost per person/visit: WH Residents – $2 / Non-residents – $3. Multi-Visit Pass Available.
The Recreational & Cultural Center pool is an “L” shaped pool measuring 25 yards x 25 meters. Open to the public and used for swim instruction and recreational use from mid-May through August. Check website for operating hours & cost.
The Haines City Family Water Park is home to a pool and kids play area with a zero-depth entry lagoon pool, water slide, splash pad and water activities. Open daily during the summer, weekends only in Spring and Fall.
Know before you go: The pool often reaches Maximum Capacity on summer days, arrive early to avoid waiting to enter the pool. There is also a large playground next to the pool at Lake Eva Park. Visit the pool website to see a full list of rules.
Common Ground was Polk County’s first “inclusive play experience,” a term used to describe non-traditional play areas. Children of varying abilities and disabilities are able to play together side-by-side!
Common Ground includes multiple play areas. Pavilions are available for rental as well as first come first serve use if not rented. Operated by the City of Lakeland.
Hours: Thursday – Tuesday: 8 AM – Dusk (every day but Wednesday)
Wednesday: 10 AM – Dusk
This playground includes my new favorite – a zipline! There are climbing structures for all ages, multiple swings, and a HUGE field next to the playground.
Restrooms – Yes
Fenced in – Partial, fence on two sides near the road, open on two sides to the field
Pavilions – Yes, first come first serve
Operated by – City of Lakeland
Lakeland’s newest playground is one of our favorites! The Rotary Playground has a pirate ship, treehouse, ziplines, parent/baby swings, and so much more to explore.
Restrooms – Yes, look for white buildings off to either side of the playground
Fenced in – No, and one side of playground is open to Lake Parker
Pavilions – Yes, eight pavilions available, first come first serve
Operated by – City of Lakeland
*There is a bell at the playground that kids can ring, some special needs parents have told us their kids struggled with the constant loud ringing of the bell*
Give your Child a Birthday to Remember at a Lakeland Flying Tigers Game!
A birthday at a Flying Tigers game is much more than just a day at the ballpark. Your child and his/her friends will get the royal treatment and experience exclusive birthday amenities only available with a party package.
Highlights include a group photo on the field, your son or daughter throwing out a ceremonial first pitch, a welcome on the loudspeaker and name up on the videoboard, a visit from Southpaw – the Flying Tigers Mascot, autographs and photos with a Flying Tigers player, and a personal party host to take care of all the party details.
Your party guests will enjoy the baseball game, chow down on traditional baseball fare of peanuts, popcorn and hot dogs (or pizza), and get to play in the Kids Zone inflatables. Your son or daughter AND their friends will have a memorable party they’ll be talking about for weeks!
The Lakeland Flying Tigers are the Single-A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers. They play at Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium from April through September. Games are family-friendly with frequent promotions on tickets, food, drinks, and activities at the ball park.